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Next Week in Music | March 20-26 • The Short List: 9 Titles You Want to Hear

Batymetal, Eric Bibb, Depeche Mode, Fall Out Boy, Nickel Creek & the rest of the best.

Earlier this month, I didn’t care enough about the new Miley Cyrus album to post about it. Next week, I won’t be waiting with bated breath for the new Lana Del Rey release — though, as with Miley, I have come to respect and appreciate her a little more over time. In any case, even without Lana, there are still plenty of releases to care about. Including these:


The Other One

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Last year, Babymetal concluded its 10-year journey which culminated in the celebration of the revered Japanese pop-metal band with the vinyl release of its retrospective album, 10 Babymetal Years. Later they released a cryptic video that announced Babymetal would be “sealed” from the world until further notice. Now Babymetal break the seal, making their return to Earth. Their website feaures a map depicting all of Babymetal’s future activities, including the ir first concept album The Other One. The LP reveals the other side of the Babymetal story that, until now, remains untold. A total of 10 songs have been discovered within The Other One restoration project, with each song representing a unique theme based on 10 separate parallel worlds that they have discovered. Babymetal was formed in 2010. Their mission was to unify the world through heavy metal by creating a fusion of heavy metal and the Japanese pop genre. Their music contains a stunning mix of electronic pop, a pinch of alternative and industrial rock, and is leveled up by fast-driven heavy metal. Their live shows are ground-breaking and epic visual as well as sound performances. Babymetal continued to travel the path of metal with the international release of their three albums, telling the story of the mighty Fox God and his brave metal warriors.”

Eric Bibb

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Ridin’, the new album from Grammy nominee and blues/roots music legend Eric Bibb, is a continuation of the vision that informs Bibb’s artistry as a modern-day blues troubadour. Grounded in the folk and blues tradition with contemporary sensibilities, Bibb’s music continues to reflect his thoughts on current world events and his own lived experiences, whilst remaining entertaining, uplifting, inspirational and relevant. “As a songwriter, studying African American history has always been a deep well of inspiration,” Bibb says. “The true stories of my ancestors and their communities are at the heart of many of the songs on my new album Ridin’. Together with co-writer/producer Glen Scott, we’ve created a concept album focusing on the ongoing task of understanding systemic racism and purging it from our world. For all its seriousness, Ridin’ is a funky, groovy, hopeful collection of songs that feature stellar guest appearances by Taj Mahal, Jontavious Willis, Steve Jordan, Tommy Sims, Harrison Kennedy, Russell Malone and Habib Koité. At a time when popular political movements are attempting to delete truth from the historical record, I feel called upon to sing songs that contribute to greater understanding and much-needed unity. The making of Ridin’ has been a labor of love. We hope you’ll enjoy the journey.”

Depeche Mode
Memento Mori

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Memento Mori is Depeche Mode’s 15th studio album and its first as a two-piece lineup of Dave Gahan and Martin Gore, following co-founder Andrew “Fletch” Fletcher’s tragic passing in 2022. Produced by James Ford with additionalwork by Marta Salogni, Memento Mori’s gestation took place during the early stages of the Covid pandemic, resulting in themes inspired directly by that period. The album’s 12 tracks chart a vast expanse of moods and textures, from its ominous opening to its closing resolve — running the gamut from paranoia and obsession to catharsis and joy, and hitting myriad points between. Having sold more than 100 million records and played to more than 35 million fans worldwide, Depeche Mode remain an ever-evolving and singularly influential musical force. An indelible inspiration to fans, critics and artists alike, Depeche Mode continues to forge ahead, with the Memento Mori album and tour representing the opening of the newest chapter of a peerless and ongoing legacy.”

Fall Out Boy
So Much (For) Stardust

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:So Much (For) Stardust sees Fall Out Boy return to a more guitar-driven, rockier soundscape, with vocalist Patrick Stump’s smooth vocals soaring atop energetic pop-punk songs with seriously danceable rhythms. Fall Out Boy reunited with producer Neil Avron — who worked with the band on the iconic three record run of From Under the Cork Tree, Infinity on High and Folie À Deux — to make So Much (For) Stardust. Speaking about the writing and recording process, Stump reveals that Fall Out Boy took a bit of a throwback approach to crafting their eighth full-length. “Technology has made it really easy to make records much more quickly these days. There’s nothing wrong with that, and that spontaneity can be exciting, but we wanted to get back to the way we used to work. We wanted to make a record that was really lovingly crafted and deliberate and patiently guided – like someone cooked you a delicate meal. I’m not a very proud guy, but I’m pretty proud of this record.” On reuniting with Avron, Stump notes: “Neal not only taught us how to make records but has a unique capacity to really take time and focus on a record. We thought it was a no-brainer to work with him again, on a record where that was very important to us, and he was gracious enough to agree to work with us.”

Elton John
Honky Château 50th Anniversary Reissue

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Honky Château was Elton John’s step into global superstardom, spawning classics such as Rocket Man, the title cut and Mona Lisas And Mad Hatters. Originally released in May 1972, his fifth studio album ushered in a to-this-day unparalleled hot streak of classic albums and was the first time he recorded at the now legendary Château d’Hérouville, a residential recording studio 25 miles northwest of Paris. It was here where he and Bernie Taupin were to write — and, with the band, subsequently record — some of the biggest global hits of his career. Performing together on record for the first time, the crew decamped to the Château for week’s pre-production in January 1972. Bernie brought his typewriter; the band set up in the dining room. Bernie would write lyrics at night and leave them on Elton’s piano for him to work on in the morning. As Elton recalls of their notoriously prolific output at the time, “The first morning we were there, I had three (songs) done by the time the band drifted downstairs looking for something to eat: Mona Lisas And Mad Hatters, Amy and Rocket Man.” The remainder of the album would follow suit: Susie (Dramas), Hercules, Salvation, Honky Cat, Slave, I Think I’m Going To Kill Myself and Mellow.’ ”

Nickel Creek

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Grammy-winning trio Nickel Creek — mandolinist Chris Thile, violinist Sara Watkins and guitarist Sean Watkins — are about to release Celebrants, their first new album in nine years. Their fifth studio album, Celebrants marks a highly anticipated return for the beloved trio and explores the inherent dynamics of human connection. Across the 18 tracks, the trio addresses love, friendship and time with lyrics both poetic and plain-spoken, as they see bridges built, crossed, burned and rebuilt. Recorded at Nashville’s RCA Studio A, the album was produced by longtime collaborator Eric Valentine (Queens of the Stone Age, Grace Potter, Weezer) and features Mike Elizondo on bass. Of the project, the band reflects, “This is a record about embracing the friction inherent in real human connection. We begin the record yearning for and pursuing harmonious connection. We end the record having realized that truly harmonious connection can only be achieved through the dissonance that we’ve spent our entire adult lives trying to avoid.” Together a sum of more than their staggering parts, Nickel Creek revolutionized bluegrass and folk in the early 2000s and ushered in a new era of what we now recognize as Americana music.”

Pink Floyd
The Dark Side Of The Moon 50th Anniversary Edition

 THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Pink Floyd’s landmark release The Dark Side Of The Moon is being reissued as a deluxe box set to celebrate the 50th anniversary of one of the best-selling albums of all time. One of the most iconic and influential albums ever, The Dark Side Of The Moon continues to find new audiences globally. The album was partly developed during live performances, and the band premiered an early version of the suite at London’s Rainbow Theatre several months before recording began. The Dark Side Of The Moon is the eighth studio album by Pink Floyd, originally released in the U.S. on March 1 and then in the U.K. on March 16 1973. The new material was recorded in 1972 and 1973 at EMI Studios (now Abbey Road Studios) in London. The iconic sleeve, which depicts a prism spectrum, was designed by Storm Thorgerson of Hipgnosis and drawn by George Hardie. The Dark Side Of The Moon has sold over 50 million copies worldwide. The new deluxe box set includes CD and gatefold vinyl of the new 2023 remastered studio album and Blu-Ray + DVD audio featuring the original 5.1 mix and remastered stereo versions. The set also includes additional new Blu-ray disc of Atmos mix plus CD and LP of The Dark Side Of The Moon Live At Wembley Empire Pool, London, 1974.”

The Secret Machines
The Moth, The Lizard, And The Secret Machines

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Much like a frantic movie about unfinished business or the one that got away, Secret Machines spent the past few years finally putting the finishing touches on what should have been their fourth LP. Long regarded as a lost album, The Moth, The Lizard And The Secret Machines was actually put on pause in 2010 and massaged in the aftermath of 2020’s return-to-form record Awake In The Brain Chamber. This essentially makes it the missing link between that effort’s brash pop songs and 2008’s sorely overlooked self-titled LP. (The latter receives a long overdue digital reissue this fall — one that features a far more fitting tracklisting and robust final master from Slowdive drummer/like-minded solo musician Simon Scott). “If you listen to them in order,” says singer/multi-instrumentalist Brandon Curtis, Awake In The Brain Chamber is basically a reaction to the Moth record — very tight and verse/chorus/verse/chorus rather than loose, sprawling and unconventional.”

The Velvet Underground
Loaded Fully Re-Loaded Edition

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Lou Reed sang about the lifesaving powers of Rock & Roll on Loaded, his fourth and final studio album with The Velvet Underground. Since it arrived in November 1970, generations have been shaking to the album’s “fine, fine music,” experiencing their own kinds of musical salvation thanks to songs like Sweet Jane, Head Held High and Oh! Sweet Nuthin’. Rhino spotlights Loaded with a new vinyl boxed set that includes nearly all the music from its expansive 2015 CD reissue, Loaded: Re-Loaded 45th Anniversary Edition. The forthcoming collection, Loaded (Fully Re-Loaded Edition), features nine LPs with stereo, mono, and full-length mixes of the original album along with a generous selection of demos, studio outtakes, and live recordings. Several tracks from the set will be available on vinyl for the first time. In addition to the nine LPs, the set also comes with four 7″ singles that reproduce the official singles and B-sides released from Loaded.”